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I am not sure if it is just that I have more clarity and awareness of things happening around me because I have been off the sauce for almost two weeks, but I tell you what, things have been happening to me in that eerie “how is that a coincidence?” sort of way lately. You know, like those days where for some reason you reminisce about a song you haven’t thought of or heard in years, then it comes on the radio an hour later? Or you come across a picture of an old friend and they call you out of the blue? I am going to go ahead and chalk it up to some sort of planetary alignment or that I have somehow achieved some state of elemental balance in my life… why? Because I’d like to believe in that shit.

It started over the weekend when I was chatting with a friend of mine. He’s one of those people who asks innocent questions that tend to hurl me into intense bouts of self-analysis. We were talking about his recent birthday and I was asking about the possibility of an impending mid-life crisis, when he asked me what my favorite year was. Simple question. Surprisingly difficult to answer. I thought about it and rattled off a few good years as I tried to dig deep and recall my most favoritest time in my life.  An then it hit me! This is it! This is my favorite year in my life. And wow, how lucky am I to be able to say that? Don’t we all strive to be able to say that every year? Isn’t that what living in the moment is all about?  It’s not that my other years sucked. I have lived a phenomenal life. There are many things I would love to experience again, others I wish I could do over a little differently, and some I’d like to completely forget about… but ultimately I do not spend my days saying “I wish I could go back to XYZ.”  Thank God for that, because I think that would be a sad state.

I spent the day deliriously happy because I realized that my 30s rule, regardless of whether I will ever accomplish the task of getting back my high school body (I’m not gonna stop trying). Then, as if by some unknown force, I bought a Self Magazine for the first time in years. What do you know? It included an article called “Formerly Hot, Finally Content,” which was an excerpt from a book called My Formerly Hot Life by Stephanie Dolgoff… and she nailed it. Granted, her book is about coping with being in your 40s and I like to think I still got a little hotness left in me, but she so eloquently described the mental and physical changes we find ourselves going through as we approach “middle-age.” I’m definitely picking up the book, because I was hooked by page three, but my favorite quote so far is, “I’m young enough to have fun and old enough to know what fun really is, as opposed to tossing my head back in faux frivolity, as I sometimes did when I was actually hot and supposed to be having the time of my life.” That’s where I am now. No longer doing what the world deems as fun, and just going out and doing what I enjoy.

On that same trip to the grocery store I bought a plant. I dabble in plants here and there (who am I kidding? If this were a video I would not have a straight face). With the exception of these two indestructible terminator plants that have followed me loyally for years, they all commit suicide when I leave town. I bought this plant because it had a stem that was more like a trunk of a tree. Sturdy looking fella. I brought it home, put it in a pretty pot (left over from one of the deceased), placed it in the corner where I had envisioned it living, and then noticed a sticker on it that said “Money Tree.” Hot damn! Now, I know that money doesn’t grow on trees, so I consulted the interwebs to find out what the meaning of these money trees are. Apparently I brought home a version of the Chinese bonsai tree that is supposed to bring you wealth. And you are supposed to put it in the Northwest corner of your house which is the prosperity area of the bagua map. Um hello? Unintentionally, it was already in the most Northwesternest corner you can go in my home. Now that’s good ju ju.

When does the money start growing? Springtime?

THEN, I went running. It was 8:30pm at night, but it did not matter, it was still ridiculously, unbearably, insanely hot and I was dragging ass on my way home from the lake trail. I told myself to keep going. I had good tunes on so I thought to myself, “If you were at a show watching this music live, you would just keep on dancin, so just keep on runnin.” Then I continued thinking, “Wow, I wish that song by Ghostland Observatory was on… the one that says ‘Keep on Dancin’ over and over.” Then… BAM! Literally two seconds later that exact song, Dancin on my Grave came on. Big deal, right? I have over 800 songs on my iPod, people. This shit does not just happen. Someone wanted me to keep on running. So keep on keepin on I did.

Because some planet or other is in my house, or something went into retrograde, or someone forwarded a chain email wishing good vibes upon their 100 closest friends….whatever it is that put me in this state, I am going to go ahead and roll with it and keep following the signs/intuitions. I have always been a gut follower. Sometimes it takes awhile for my stubborn ass to finally listen to it, but I’ve come to have a pretty darn great and trusting relationship with my gut. So I am going to go ahead and forgive it for having a little extra padding on it. Nobody and no gut is perfect.

Insomnia strikes again.

For the past three nights I have been having a horrendous time falling asleep. And when I do, I can’t remain asleep for more than 30 minutes at a time. I’ve also had really creepy nightmares. Not the kind where a monster is chasing you through a home depot and every aisle is filled ceiling to floor with rolls of pink insulation (I really had that dream once), but the really creepy ones where you dream you are in your bed, in your house, and someone is in there  to murder you. Then, right before waking up, you try to scream and you try to get out of bed but everything is paralyzed. Then you lay there in a panic for a good hour before you realize none of it actually happened. Those are the kind of nightmares I get when I fall asleep on my back. My mom and my sister get them too. Only when sleeping in the supine position (I learned that term on google last night). Which sucks, because that is the most comfortable way for me to sleep.

Anywho. We’ve commiserated with each other on this unfortunate condition for many years. Yesterday, I was telling my friend Pam how I wanted to check the three of us into a sleep lab to investigate the phenomenon. She suggested maybe I check if there was anything on the interwebs about it first. Brilliant. Why didn’t I think of that the multiple times I have found myself frozen in front of the computer thinking I had searched everything there was to know??

Alas. This is not a condition isolated to the Cadmus women. Apparently “Sleep Paralysis” happens to a lot of people and seems to be more common when the individual is sleeping supine, has consumed alcohol recently, is stressed out and is lacking in sleep. Check. Check. Check. Check.

I just think that is cool. I think if I went back to school and did everything over again, I would be a sleep scientist. What happens when we sleep fascinates me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_paralysis

So today, I was determined to battle my restlessness. I did everything right. No drinking. No caffeine after 4. Turned my phone off at 9. Rested on the couch then hit my bed with a book at 10pm. It was working! I was drowsy.

Then, I heard and peripherally saw something, something big, fall out of the light in my ceiling and land on the floor at the foot of my bed. I let out a yelp that set off dogs in my building and my heart rate shot up to 190. So much for sleep. I carefully crawled to the end of my bed, in fear, to see what was there waiting for me and, before I got there… it jumped. High. And landed back down on a T-shirt I had on the floor.

Now, I am standing at on the end of my bed (watching out for the ceiling fan this time) and thinking “holy shit, if I had a man here I would be standing on my dresser shrieking and forcing him to get rid of this visitor.” But, I was by myself. I said, “You can do this. You have to do this. Because that thing is not staying where it is,” (no, seriously, I said it out loud) and I looked around for something to throw over what I can only guess was a cricket two inches in diameter. The light in my ceiling must be powered by uranium, because this fucking cricket was mutant. I grabbed some shorts off my dresser, threw them over the big guy, picked up the shorts, then wandered around in a state of insanity trying to decide where to throw him before he crawled out and jumped at my face.

I thought, I’ll just throw him outside… he can go back to his home. Then I remembered that requires running down two flights of stairs and I saw a mini orange lizard on the wall down there earlier (I know, right? It sounds like I live in Costa Rica). Option two? Flush the sucker. I wasn’t even sure this guy was small enough to get down the hole, but I watched him circle the bowl then eventually take the tube to his new aquaworld.

I was kind of pumped afterward. It was an adrenalin rush. I didn’t need a man! I can get rid of intruders all by myself. Then I got sad… because I realized, just because I don’t need a man, it would still be nice to have someone there to take care of me once in a while. Or… if he was a big pussy, it still would have been nice to have someone there to laugh or videotape my ridiculous behavior during this episode. Simply writing about it does not do the hilarity justice.

Now? I am still waiting for my heart rate to slow. At that point, I will probably still lie awake staring at the light wondering how many other mutant bugs are up there waiting for their turn to land in the drop zone and make their way to my bed. Hey, maybe there is a man in there waiting to drop in… A girl can dream right?

Check out my guest blog today on “What are you drinking?” about what people were throwing back at Lollapalooza last weekend (pretty much anything). Watch here for my recount of other crazy happenings from the festival (I could write 72 blog posts about the people watching alone).

A helpful and civilized way to make people aware of their douche/whore beacons (thanks Pam!). Now, instead of just standing by, pointing and whispering in the ear of your girlfriend about the ridiculousness of passers-by, you can be productive and change someone’s life. I’m quite certain that the larger portion of people who walk around displaying these faux pas are just oblivious and will likely appreciate a little help from a stranger. Or not. Either way, like the notepad says, it’s better that they know.

You can get one of these nifty pads by Knock Knock here.

One perk of running my own business that has really upped the quality of my life is that my company (me) encourages IM chats with friends during business hours. It allows for mini-mind breaks and crowd-sourcing ideas. For me, I get mini-doses of hilarity through my daily gChats with HP, usually including confessions about our occasional toe dips into psycho-land and the latest encounters with the opposite gender. We also take that opportunity to vent about everything that we know would likely cause anyone else on this earth to pass judgment. We have a mutual understanding.

Does this make me less productive? No less so than if I had office mates yapping in my ear all day and cornering me in the break room.

This weekend I’ll be joining HP in Chicago for our annual Happy Lolladays weekend. This year’s Lollapalooza line-up promises to be right up our alley. Lots of dancin. Luckily, we have the hookup on the VIP Lounge which means free Titos Vodka and twice daily “feedings” to fuel 12 hours a day of non-stop booty shaking (not to mention air-conditioned bathrooms!). We always manage to make a few new friends, and frequently run into friends of years past. This is the first year that one of us actually lives in Chicago… and only blocks from Grant Park. Score.

I’ve actually been asked to guest blog for “What are you drinking?“, a blog about great experiences in life and the various libations that accompany some of those outings. I’ll be chatting with event attendees about what is in their cup as they soak in the sun and music. My guess is that who is on stage at the time will dictate who is in the crowd and what they are sipping on…

The best thing about Lollapalooza is that it will actually be my light at the end of the dark tunnel which is Shark Week. Shark Week is dumb. What is all the fuss about? What I do like about it is that instead of finding myself glued to the TV watching reenactments of shark attacks, I am having a super productive week GSD…Getting Shit Done. Which will culminate in 3 days of non-stop live music. Am I being insensitive to the people who have survived shark attacks that want to tell their stories? Maybe so, and I am a little bit sorry, but I still think its dumb.

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